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Bread and Roses, Too [Livre audio, Version intégrale] [Anglais] [CD]

Katherine Paterson , Lorna Raver

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Description de l'ouvrage

12 septembre 2006
Rosa’s mother is singing again, for the first time since Papa died in an accident in the mills. But instead of filling their cramped tenement apartment with Italian lullabies, Mamma is out on the streets singing union songs. Rosa is terrified that her mother and older sister, Anna, are endangering their lives by marching against the corrupt mill owners. After all, didn’t Miss Finch tell the class that the strikers are nothing but rabble-rousers–an uneducated, violent mob? Suppose Mamma and Anna are jailed or, worse, killed? What will happen to Rosa and little Ricci?

When Rosa is sent to Vermont with other children to live with strangers until the strike is over, she fears she will never see her family again. Then, on the train, a boy begs her to pretend that he’s her brother. Alone and far from home, she agrees to protect him . . . even though she suspects that he is hiding some terrible secret.

From a beloved, award-winning author, here is a moving story based on real events surrounding an infamous 1912 strike.

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

A beautifully written novel that puts a human face on history... Paterson at her best-- and that's saying a lot.
Kirkus Reviews, Starred

The immigrant labor struggle is stirring and dramatic.
Booklist, ALA, Starred Review
--Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché .

Biographie de l'auteur

Katherine Paterson’s many awards include two Newbery Medals, two National Book Awards and the Hans Christian Andersen Medal. Her inspiration for this book came after coming across an old photograph of thirty-five children taken on the steps of the Old Socialist Labor Hall in Barre, Vermont. The caption read: “Children of Lawrence, Massachusetts, Bread and Roses Strike Come to Barre.” She had heard of the strike but wondered what children from that city were doing in her Vermont town, so she determined to find out. Katherine Paterson lives with her husband, John, in Barre, Vermont.

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22 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Beware that movement that generates its own songs. 25 septembre 2006
Par E. R. Bird - Publié sur
Doggone it, Katherine Paterson, stop making me cry! Under normal circumstances the number of books that make me tear up is a slim number that could be counted on one hand. And most of those books, if I was going to be honest with you, were probably written by Katherine Paterson. Ms. Paterson is a bit of a wonder. Year after year, decade after decade, she churns out consistently well-written meaningful pieces of children's fiction. The last book of Ms. Paterson's that I read was her rather remarkable, "The Same Stuff As Stars". Now, however, she's decided to traipse back into the world of historical fiction, alongside all the other authors this year, and produce a bit of fascinating history that can show a situation clear distinctions between good and bad, and yet leave enough room for people with nebulous motives. If complex narratives is the name of the game, consider Paterson a player.

On the one hand there's Jake. On the other hand there's Rosa. Both children live in Lawrence, Massachusetts in less than stellar conditions. For Jake, life is especially rough. His father's a drunkard who steals his son's money all the time and beats him senseless. And though Jake can usually make a little money in the local mills, it's rarely enough to keep him fed and warm. Rosa, in contrast, is relatively lucky. She lives with her mama, elder sister, and little baby brother in one of the city's many tenements. But life at the mill has been getting worse and worse and when it looks as if the mill owners are going to cut the workers' pay yet again, that's the straw that breaks the camel's back. Now Rosa's mother is joining in with the 1912 strike alongside workers from a variety of different backgrounds. And that might not be so bad except that Rosa is firmly convinced that her mama is putting their entire way of life in jeopardy. Her worst fears are confirmed too when her mother puts her on a train to Barre, Vermont to wait out the strike with a kind family there. On the train Jake meets up with Rosa and though they are only barely acquainted, he convinces her to say that he's her brother so that he can get out of town fast. As it happens, Jake has a secret he's trying to escape while Rosa has a life she's trying to remember.

Though it's clear from the get go that the mill owners are bad and the mill workers are good, Paterson works tirelessly to muddle the issue through Rosa's eyes. As far the girl is concerned, joining in the strike is dangerous and common. And Jake's no better a person with his constant schemes on how to get ahead and lie his way out of most situations. When he finds himself with the striking workers the book reads that, "This was the excitement of being a thief in the middle of hundreds of thieves, all set to steal away the world of Billy Wood", who is the mill's owner. In fact, you could probably say that there are few main characters out there half as self-centered as Rosa and Jake. For a long time all they think about is themselves. It takes a long time for them to get on that train headed for Vermont (150 pages or so), though once they do they're taken far enough away from what they're used to to think about something other than me me me. Rosa's schoolteacher Miss Finch is another complicated character. Unlike the mill schoolteacher in "Counting On Grace", Miss Finch is completely on the side of the owners. She doesn't want Rosa to be taken out of school, but she also encourages the children vehemently to keep their parents from striking. Rosa is, of course, completely on her teacher's side, and it's interesting to watch as Paterson pulls the child reader's strings back and forth and back again. She never tells her audience what to think and she doesn't have to. This book is an excellent example of "show, don't tell".

For those amongst us who don't know their American history as they should, I think I might not be the only one who thought that the title, "Bread and Roses, Too", meant that this story was a sequel. I know, I know. I'm a Neanderthal. I accept that. Really, it wasn't until the story showed how Rosa participated in naming the Bread and Roses Strike personally that I knew where the title even came from. Ms. Paterson, who is always good with clarification, mentions in the book's Historical Note at the end that no one really knows who came up with that phrase. She just took the liberty of assigning the job to Rosa, and it works like a dream.

Part of the privilege that comes with being a writer is that if you would like to set a book partly in your own hometown, you have that right. Ms. Paterson sets part of this book in Barre, Vermont where she herself lives. The people of Barre have long been known for the role they played in hosting the children of the Lawrence strikers. Ms. Paterson used all kinds of Barre historians to aid her in the writing of this book, and the result is a story that certainly gives the city its due. The writing for its own part is, of course, pitch perfect at all times. And while the book's first sentence is nothing to crow about, its last one is amazing. You won't understand much of what it means without having read the book, but I'll write it here just so you can get a taste of what Paterson's about. "How strange, how wonderful it semed to be running, not away from petty crime or deadly fear, but toward a new life where bread was never wanting and roses grew in stone."

It's interesting to note that Paterson doesn't go into the details of what working in a mill would entail in this book. We see the result of horrid working conditions rather than the cause. Technically she already showed the cause in her book "Lyddie". And if you happen to be desperate to read about what it was like for mill children, definitely seek out Elizabeth Winthrop's remarkable, "Counting On Grace". If children reading this book can get past Rosa's self-centeredness (she doesn't ever seem to get behind the strike until it seems as if she's named it herself) and they don't get bogged down in the story's first half, they'll be rewarded with a remarkable addition to the Paterson oeuvre. Reading "Bread and Roses, Too", makes you feel, when you are done, as if you've become a better person for the reading. A lovely little novel.
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A meticulously researched historical novel 9 février 2007
Par Jennifer Robinson - Publié sur
Bread and Roses, Too is told from the alternating perspectives of two very different children. Jake Beale has faked his papers to work at the local mill, is largely illiterate, and spends most of his time running away from his abusive, drunken father. He respects no one, and sleeps literally in garbage heaps. Rosa Serutti is the daughter of Italian immigrants, and attends school, though her mother and older sister work in the mills. She's studious, prissy, and quiet, and worries a lot.

Though they have different backgrounds and experiences, both children find their lives turned upside down when the Lawrence mill-workers go on strike. To tell the truth, neither reacts well. Jake steals, lies, and fails to appreciate people's kindness to him. Rosa lectures her mother about the perils of striking, and slinks along on the fringes of the marches and demonstrations that arise, even as she is sometimes inspired by them. I didn't much like either child, early in the story. But things do get better. Eventually, Jake and Rosa's lives intertwine. Rosa is sent away to live in safety with a family in Vermont, and Jake escapes along with her, towing a dark secret.

All of the major events in the book are based on meticulously researched historical events (as detailed in a historical note at the end of the book). The Lawrence strikes are depicted as they happened, in terms of local and state responses, the presence of union organizers, and the humanitarian "vacations" provided for many of the mill-workers children. Barre, Vermont really did host several children from Lawrence during the strikes. A photo of the children inspired the author to look further into the story.

The historical detail does slow the book down a bit, especially in the early part, when Jake and Rosa are still in Lawrence. Because of this, I had a bit of trouble getting into this book. However, it won me over by the end, and had me in tears (in a good way). The two strongest aspects of the book, I think, are the depth of the immersion into the world of the immigrant mill-workers, and the complexity of the characterization.

Regarding the immersion, this is a book that will make readers feel lucky to have food, and warmth, and clean water, and not to have to worry about basic survival. Here's an example, when one of the Italian strikers buys lunch for Jake, giving him a platter of spaghetti:

"It was the most beautiful sight he had ever seen. The tomato sauce even sported a few bits of greasy sausage. Jake forgot the crowd around him, forgot the strike, forgot the menace that waited for him in the shack, and fell to, his nose almost in the steaming plate. He hadn't had a full platter of food to himself in his entire thirteen years of life."

None of the characters in this book are one-dimensional, with the exception of Jake's dad, who is largely off-screen. Rosa's teacher is not very nice to the children in her class, and she tries to coerce them to convince their parents not to strike. And yet... she travels though the violence-prone streets to ask why Rosa isn't coming to school anymore, and she ends up providing lunch every day for the kids who remain in her class. The man in Barre that Rosa and Jake are sent to stay with, Mr. Gerbati, starts out silent and grouchy, and especially resentful of Jake. But when Jake actually gives him reason to be disapproving, Mr. Gerbati displays unexpected kindness "like his flowers blooming from the cold gray granite." Rosa's mamma is uncouth and uneducated, and somewhat careless of her children, but she has a voice like an angel, and she wants better for her Rosa than she ever had. Isn't that the immigrant dream?

I think that the book is accurate in capturing Rosa's struggles as the "smart one" in an immigrant family. She wants to fit in with her family, but even though she's still a child, her education is taking her beyond them. She's the only one who reads and writes fluently in English. At one point she thinks:

"She would be an American, an educated, civilized, respected American, not a despised child of an immigrant race. When she grew up she'd change her name and marry a real American and have real American children. She wouldn't go out to work in a mill and leave them in the care of someone's old granny who couldn't even speak English. She'd stay home and cook American food and read them American books and ... But even as she thought these determined thoughts, somewhere in the back of her mind she could smell rigatoni smothered in tomato sauce with bits of sausage in it and could hear her mamma's beautiful voice singing Un Bel Di."

I think that there are plenty of immigrant kids today facing the same sort of conflict between the promise of being American and the pull of their own culture.

This is a book that I'll remember for a long time. There is so much unflinching detail: Jake sleeping in the garbage; the welts on Jake's back; the wide-eyed awe of the children when they visit the Gerbati's house for the first time; and the feeling that Rosa has of being part of something larger than herself, during the demonstrations. I think this is one of those books that gets better in your memory, the longer it stays with you. I hope that kids will be able to get past the "good for you" feeling of the early historical parts, because the story has a lot to offer.

This book review was originally published on my blog, Jen Robinson's Book Page, on February 8, 2007.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Substance and Beauty, Too 22 mars 2007
Par Esther J. Ramer - Publié sur
This lovely story tells about two children caught up in the infamous Lawrence, MA, mill strike of 1912. Rosa Serutti is caught between the anti-union pronouncements of her teacher and the harsh reality of tenement life for her immigrant family. Jake Beale runs from his alcoholic father and finds friends among the Italian mill-workers. As the story progresses, Rosa and Jake are taken in by Mr. and Mrs. Gerbati in Barre, Vermont. Here they receive clothing and food and love from Mrs. Gerbati, but both Jake and Mr. Gerbati are troubled by something from the past. Through the beauty of roses blooming from granite, Jake finds a new life and Mr. Gerbati breaks out of his shell. The strike ends and Rosa returns to her Italian mamma, the woman who deserved not only bread for her family, but roses too.

This is historical fiction of the highest calibre, with authentic details, well-developed characters, and a touching ending. It is a story of substance and beauty, too.
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Deeply Moving Historical Novel 14 janvier 2014
Par Regina Trailweaver - Publié sur
Format:Format Kindle|Achat authentifié par Amazon
Katherine Paterson brings the times and the characters who lived through them to such vivid life that I could not put this book down. Her detailed account of the inner emotional and psychological lives of the young people in this story is brilliant. The dialogue is so real and convincing that I never doubted the truth of this story for one second. Rosa, the heroine, is transformed by the events swirling around her while her desperate sidekick acts exactly as you would expect an abandoned, unloved boy to behave. Her story telling is pure pleasure, but Paterson's greater gift here may be the reminder of what workers won for us all at great risk and cost over a century ago.
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Good read 31 décembre 2013
Par Samira P. - Publié sur
Very well written. Such a compelling story and a great way to get kids interested in history. Makes you want to learn more about the era.
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